Tuesday, August 16, 2011

LeAnn Rimes

Am I an author?


noun /ˈôTHər/ 
authors, plural

1. A writer of a book, article, or report

Or did I just write that one book that one time through that small Adventist publisher and . . . it-wasn't-even-a-big-deal-and-it's-not-great-writing-and-I-wrote-it-four-years-ago-during-a-rough-patch-in-my-life-when-I-was-young-and-stupid-and-now-I-read-it-and-think, "Good grief, girl! Get a hold of yourself!" (such has been my script the last few months).

No. I am not an author.

Am I a musician?


noun /myo͞oˈziSHən/ 
musicians, plural

1. A person who is talented or skilled in music

Or am I just this girl who has been playing piano since she was five and singing in talent shows since she was 7, aspiring to be LeAnn Rimes and singing for "special" music in church and writing little diddys others have politely called "songs."

No. I am not a musician.

Am I an artist?


noun /ˈärtist/ 
artists, plural

1. A performer, such as a painter, singer, actor, or dancer

Or am I just kinda quirky and slightly "capable" of slathering a few canvases and collaging and designing and drawing. Maybe the "ability" to stand up in front of others and "perform" is really just a genetic flaw for those of us who "seem" to have one extra ounce of confidence and don't mind standing on a stage.

No. I am not an artist.

All I know is what I have.

And what I have is this:

I enjoy writing and singing and playing piano and creating/being/performing art. But why do those big words like "author" and "musician" and "artist" scare me so much? Maybe it's that in taking the title--in accepting those words to be descriptive of me--there's a risk. There's certainly more disappointment if I fail, claiming to be a musician, than if I fail just being "that girl who tinkers around on the piano once in awhile." If I never write another book. If I never put together a CD. If I never create anything meaningful than it wouldn't have mattered because I never claimed to be anything anyway.


This make me sad. Writing this makes me sad. Knowing that I doubt myself and fear taking risks makes me want to fast forward my life 40 years and just get to the part where I know how this is going to end and I don't have to worry anymore about just who or what I will be.

Apparently, I'd be willing to pass up on "living" so long as I can be in control.

I imagine these feelings have resurfaced because, in spending time with Mr. G and Mr. F (my cooperating teachers during student teaching), they've been asking me questions about who I am: "What do you enjoy? Do you like music? Are you an athlete? Do you have a boyfriend? Do you have siblings?"

Instead of saying, "Yes, I am an author/musician/artist/athlete/world traveler," I found myself saying, "Nah, I just dabble."

Instead of owning my name, I've been making up another one. A tamer one. One where less is expected of me and I don't have to perform or measure up. Or...be who I am. Being someone else just seems easier. Because then I can't fail.

And that's what we're all after, right?

Safety. Security. Comfort. Status quo. Satisfactory. Mediocre. Easy.

Yeah, at this rate, I should be there in about five years.

If nothing changes.

If nothing changes.